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Cobblers repair and sometimes make shoes, and they may also repair luggage, belts, handbags, briefcases, and other objects.
Long ago, cobblers hammered nails and stitched threads to hold the parts of a shoe together. Some cobblers today still use those traditional methods, but others rely on adhesives instead of nails. For these modern cobblers, nails are obsolete and stitching is largely decorative.
In May 2006, there were 7,450 shoe and leather workers and repairers employed throughout the country. This total does not include cobblers who are self-employed.
Median annual earnings of shoe and leather workers and repairers were $20,450 in May 2006; this means that half of all shoe and leather workers and repairers earned more than this amount, and half earned less. The highest earning 10 percent made more than $30,710, and the lowest earning 10 percent made less than $14,690. These data are for wage-and-salary workers only and do not include the self-employed.
These data are from the Occupational Employment Statistics program. For more information, see "Cobbler," by Kathleen Green, Occupational Outlook Quarterly, Summer 2007.
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, The Economics Daily, Working as a cobbler at https://www.bls.gov/opub/ted/2007/sept/wk4/art03.htm (visited June 10, 2023).